Crap/Not Crap:


I could see myself being into this back in the day. It suits my ‘reformist’ tendencies (really – all the way back to the Second International) and my belief that part of seizing the means of production means appropriating liberal democracy towards socialist ends. Or ‘putting liberal democracy right-side up,’ to borrow from Marx’s inversion of Hegel.


3 Responses to “Crap/Not Crap:”

  1. Ben Says:

    What happens when someone appropriates liberal democracy toards socialist ends, exactly?

  2. pattyjoe Says:


    Previous uprisings have failed to make radical democracy one of their stated goals, thus allowing for priveliged minorities to assume _political_ authority even as they (allegedly) went about redistributing the society’s economic wealth. Massive state bureaucracies, secret police and all the other horrors are as much an effect of this dearth of participatory democracy as they are of communists’ fetish for ‘big government’ in and of itself. The only thing more absurd than socialism without democracy, of course, is the manifestation of ‘democracy’ applied in an exploitiative class society.

    More importantly, taking on radical democracy would entail accepting (embracing) a multiplicity of viewpoints and justice claims, as well as ridding marxism of its teleological vestiges and its worst universalisms. Pursuit of democratic ends/means is in my opinion the only way we can get to practicing what Stuart Hall calls ‘marxism without guarantees.’

  3. Ben Says:

    OK, that sounds good to me. I always want to know more. I’m flirting with marxism and certainly share a lot of the viewpoints you describe. Maybe I’ll become a contemporary marxist one of these days, especially if it means incorporating the most recent poststructuralist and postcolonial threads. Does that mean I have to reject my ideas about otherworldly phenomena?

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